Category: News

FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans

The Bank of Industry will also join to coordinate the implementation of the scheme.

The Federal Government has released new details on the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) support scheme being rolled out under the National Economic Sustainability Programme.

According to estimates provided, the sum of N50 billion will be used to provide payroll support, N200 billion for loans to artisans, and N10 billion support to private transport companies and workers

The government disclosed in a tweet on the official handle of the government, the support scheme will include a Guaranteed Off-take Scheme for priority products, and an MSMEs Survival Fund.

 

Modalities for the take-off scheme

The first track is a Guaranteed Off-take Scheme which will ensure continued local production and safeguard 100,000 existing small businesses to save 300,000 jobs.

Priority products include processed foods, personal protective equipment, hand sanitizers, face-masks, face-shield, shoe-covers and pharmaceuticals.

The implementation committee chaired by Ambassador Mariam Katagum, Minister of the Federal Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment, will collaborate with private sector MSME associations to verify and screen applications from bidding MSMEs, define quantity and price of products required, and also get participants to join in the procurements.

SME survival fund

With a budget of N15 billion, the SME survival fund is expected to sustain 500,000 jobs in 50,000 SMEs.

Major sectors to benefit from the SME survival fund include hotels, restaurants, creative industries, road transport, tourism, private schools and export-related businesses.

The committee will identify eligible SMEs and screening and verification for this fund will be based on company registration, and tax registration. The implementation committee will approve disbursements through microfinance banks and fin-tech credit providers.

MSMEs that are unregistered will receive support to complete registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and all participants will be expected to make payments based on signed agreements.

The Bank of Industry will also join to coordinate the implementation of the scheme.

The scheme will last 3 months with Ambassador Mariam Katagum as Chairman, while Ibukun Awosika, Founder of The Chair Centre Limited (TCCL), and First Bank Nigeria will serve as the Vice Chairman.

More details are to be released subsequently from the Implementation Committee.

In July 2020, the Federal Government announced plans to roll out a N2.3 trillion stimulus package and survival fund for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to stay afloat amid the economic challenges imposed by the pandemic.

The Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who also heads the Economic Sustainability Committee, announced it at the 2020 edition of the Micro MSMEs Awards held virtually in July.

To benefit from the scheme, MSMEs would have to go through a rigorous and painstaking verification process which will be based on certain criteria.

MSMEs that have between 10 to 50 staffs are qualified for this fund. The businesses must make their payroll available to the government for verification while applying for the fund. Once qualified, the MSMEs will be eligible to have their staff salary paid directly from the fund for 3 months.

Requirment for the free 250,000 FG-CAC Business Names Registration for MSMEs

As part of Federal Government’s post Covid-19 Pandemic survival intervention to support micro and small businesses to formalise their businesses, the Federal Government has approved the free registration of 6,606 Business Names in each of the 34 states while Abia, Lagos and Kano will have 7,906, 9,084 and 8,406 respectively.

Consequently, all interested Micro and Small Entrepreneurs, Artisans, Craftsmen/Women (one or more persons) that are yet to formalise their businesses should take advantage of this rare opportunity.

Aggregators have been appointed to receive applications from interested persons in line with CAC requirements.

The names and  contact details of the aggregators can be obtained on the Commission’s Website as follows: www.cac.gov.ng

The free registrations will start on the 19th October 2020.

Don’t be left out! Hurry now to any of the centres with the following documents to register your business:

  1. Three (3) Proposed Names

  2. Two (2) Passport sized photographs

  3. Valid Means of Identification

  4. Phone Number/Email address

There are forcal persons in each state of the  federation known as agregators to whom  you can submit your documents

LIST OF AGGREGATORS AND STATE FOCAL PERSONS FOR THE FREE 250,000 FG/CAC BUSINESS NAMES
REGISTRATION FOR MSMEs

Post-UTME Test To Begin Sept. 7 — JAMB

The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), has shifted the post-Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (post-UTME) screening for the 2020 admission processes till Sept.7 in universities, polytechnics and colleges of education in the country.

The board said the shift in the date of the admission process from the earlier announced Aug. 21 was to accommodate candidates who would be taking part in this year’s school-based Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE).

Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, the Board Registrar, made this known on Monday, after a consultative virtual meeting with Vice Chancellors, Rectors, and Provosts of tertiary institutions.

According to him, the view of JAMB is that while we go on consulting at a point when it becomes necessary for decision, we should all come together and take decisions.

“Presently as you are aware, WAEC starts the Senior School Certificate Examination on Aug. 17, it will go on till Sept. 7.

“Similarly, on Sept. 2 or thereabout, NABTEB will commence its own examination that will go on till Oct. 15, and immediately after that, NECO starts from the 5th to Nov.18.

“Rather than making candidates run, particularly, when they will have to write their school certificate exam in different towns and rush to universities elsewhere for post-UTME, like somebody rushing from Sokoto to Ibadan for post-UTME, we believe as a custodian of the highest sector of the education system, we should avoid that,” Oloyede said.

The JAMB boss said institutions whose post-UTME screening was mandatory for candidates would have to spread such exercise in two phases.

“For those institutions who want to take post-UTME, that cannot be earlier than the 7th of September and it will be held twice – from 7th September to 4th of October, and then it will be held for the second time on the 18th of November to mop up those who are taking their school certificate examination,” he said.

Oloyede, who commended the various submissions of heads of tertiary institutions during the meeting, said institutions that conducted admissions without the administration of any-post UTME screening, should also ensure candidates whose SSCE results would be released toward the end of the year were not denied participation in the admission exercise.

He said that the board had withheld results of candidates that sat for the 2020 UTME at Correctional Service Centres (prisons) over suspected infractions.

“There are candidates who took exams in the correctional centres  that we know are not prisoners, so we wrote to the correctional centres to explain how that happens, because we did not want non-prisoners to take advantage of the concessions we give to inmates,” Oloyede said.

News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the virtual meeting attracted 488 participants from across all states in the country.

It was attended by JAMB’s Director of Administration, Aliyu Muhammed; Director of Finance, Muktar Bello; Director of Information Communication Technology, Fabian Okoro,; Director of Information, Dr Fabian Benjamin, among others. (NAN)

Animal cruelty: 55-year-old man arrested for raping cow in Madhya Pradesh, India


Bhopal, India: In an incident of extreme animal brutality, a cow was allegedly raped by a 55-year-old man in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. The man was arrested after the cops examined the CCTV footage of the area, the police said on Tuesday.

At around 4 am on July 4, the man went to a dairy in Sundar Nagar and allegedly performed unnatural sex with a cow.

A Srivastava, Ashoka Garden police station in-charge told news agency ANI that the accused man has been arrested and a case has been filed in relation to the incident.

Cows raped at shelter in Ayodhya, India

In May last year, a man was arrested in Ayodhya for allegedly raping several cows lodged at a local cattle shelter. The accused man was identified as Rajkumar. Rajkumar was a resident of Gonda, Nawabganj and was a frequent visitor of the shelter.

Rajkumar’s objectionable activities came to light when some of the volunteers saw a man raping cows while looking at the CCTV footage of the shelter. Following this, alert volunteers started keeping a close watch on the cows.

Lady gang-raped by 8 men after being set up by her friend in Adamawa state


A 33-year-old lady was reportedly gang-raped after being deceived into the men’s den by her own friend, said to be the only female member of a 9-man rape gang.

The Adamawa state police command has confirmed the arrest of five members of the gang including the lady, while four are at large.

30-year-old Zainab Jafaru reportedly arranged for her friend to be gang-raped and reportedly disappeared after taking her to the men. Adamawa State Police spokesman, DSP Suleiman Nguroje said;

“On 13/6/2020, following a report received from a 33-year-old lady being raped by a syndicate of 9 at Gerio, a remote area of Jambutu, Yola North LGA, Police operatives attached to the command’s monitoring team, arrested five people: Ahmadu Ismail (20 years old); Salu Buba (25 years); Muhammed Ali (78 years); Abubakar Ali (28 years) and Zainab Jafaru (Female) 30 years.

“The incident happened on 12/6/2020 when the 5th Suspect Zainab Jafaru, deceived the complainant to accompany her to a certain place to meet her boyfriend.

“Upon arrival, Zainab’s boyfriend (now on the run), invited his gang, who forcefully had sexual intercourse with the complainant one after another.”

Lightning strikes three FRSC officials dead in Ogun


Three FRSC officials have died after they were struck by lightning in Ogun State.

The tragedy occured early on Wednesday, June 17, in the ancient town of Ilese, near Ijebu -Ode, in Ijebu North-East local government area of Ogun State.

The lightning struck at about 10am while officials of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) were preparing for the early morning parade within the vicinity of their office located at the old toll gate.

According to Vanguard, a senior member of the Corps disclosed that there were about twelve officials in the same office when the lightning struck 3 of them.

Men of the state’s special security outfit code-named “OP MESA” have taken over security of the entire area, chasing onlookers away and preventing journalists from taking pictures.

Also, traditionalists worshipers otherwise known as Sango adherents have joined other FRSC officials at the scene of the incident in Ilese Ijebu in a bid to perform some traditional rites on the corpses before they are released to government officials for burial, the publication adds.

Popular Radio personality, Dan Foster dies


Nigerians have taken to Twitter to mourn American radio personality, Dan Foster.

The former Cool FM radio host’s death was announced today, June 17. There are speculations he died of Covid-19.

Colleagues and friends reacted to the tragic news by paying tribute to him via their social media accounts.
Cool FM OAP Do2dtun wrote: “Oh Dan Foster… you gave me the strength to do this and even more. This is really painful.”

He added: “He saved me my job.. Such a story!.. he kept me regardless.. look at me now.. “The Big Dog” Dan Foster put it all in for me and us at Coolfm. What an OAP…. The best morning show host till date in Nigeria. This is a big loss.”

Nigerians mourn as radio personality, Dan Foster dies

Frank Edoho wrote: “I just got off the phone, my friend Oscar confirmed that Dan Foster has passed on. This is a very very dark year. How can I overcome this unending melancholy. Rest in Peace, dear Friend.”

Nigerians mourn as radio personality, Dan Foster dies

Comedian Bovi wrote: “When I moved to lagos in November 2003, Dan Foster was one of the reasons I didn’t run back home to delta state. I tuned into cool fm one morning and Dan made me love radio. Rip big dawg! I’m sad you left. But I’m happy your mark remains forever !”

Nigerians mourn as radio personality, Dan Foster dies

Daniel ‘Dan’ Foster was popularly known as The Big Dawg or Top Dawg. He worked with Cool FM and Inspiration FM in Lagos, Nigeria. He was formerly an Idol series judge. He also held a similar position with the Got Talent franchise.

Edo 2020: INEC says no deadline extension for primaries, submission of nominations

NEC says it will not extend the deadline for the conduct of primaries and submission of parties nominations for the Sept. 19 Edo governorship election.

INEC postponed 4 senatorial by-elections

By Emmanuel Oloniruha
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says it will not extend the deadline for the conduct of primaries and submission of parties nominations for the Sept. 19 Edo governorship election.

INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, stated this at the commission’s second virtual consultative meeting of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), on Wednesday in Abuja.
Yakubu reminded political parties fielding candidates of the need to conclude their primaries for the nomination of candidates in the next 10 days.
“The deadline is Saturday, June 27, 2020. I must stress that the date is firm and fixed. There will be no extension.
“While the conduct of primaries and nomination of candidates will be the sole responsibility of political parties, our officials will monitor the primaries as required by law.
“Already, INEC has published the date and mode of primaries for each of the 15 political parties that indicated their intention to participate in the election.
“Similarly, there will be no extension of time for political parties that fail to submit the names and other details of the candidates that emerge from their primaries using the dedicated portal created by the Commission.
“For emphasis, the deadline is 6 p.m on Monday, 29 June 2020,” Yakubu declared.
He advised political parties to adhere to the four mandatory requirements for eligibility of candidates for governorship elections as enshrined in Section 177 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

The INEC boss said that a candidate nominated by a political party must be a Nigerian citizen by birth, 35 years, must be a member of, and sponsored by, a political party, and must be educated up to at least School Certificate level or equivalent.
He said that the advice was crucial in view of INEC’s experience in managing the nomination of candidates for the last two governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi.
“Adherence to these clear constitutional provisions is compulsory in order to avoid litigation that follow the nomination of candidates, some of which are still pending before the Courts.
“In fact, one of such cases involving the attempt to substitute an ineligible candidate by one of the political parties was determined only yesterday by the Supreme Court in favour of INEC.”
Yakubu stressed the need for the commission and security agencies to remain proactive during the party primaries, campaigns, voting and eventual declaration of results.
“We must safeguard the process and protect all those involved – voters, INEC officials, observers, the media and even some of the unarmed security personnel deployed to the polling units.
“Doing so requires professionalism and neutrality.
“In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, we should also ensure compliance with the protective measures contained in the recently published Commission’s policy as well as the advisory by health authorities.
“In the context of the current global health emergency, we have the additional responsibility to ensure the conduct of free, fair, credible and safe elections.”
Yakubu recalled that at the last ICCES meeting, there was an agreement to draft a Code of Conduct for security personnel on election duty based on the report of the Special Committee earlier set up to ensure collaboration and synergy in the deployment of security agencies for elections.
“The meeting also mandated the Co-Chairmen of ICCES to take into consideration safety measures for security personnel in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The draft policy has already been circulated for consideration and approval at this meeting.
“Thereafter, the policy will become part of the manual for training of security personnel and to guide their conduct during elections. The policy will be published for public information.”
The Co-Chairman of ICCESS and National Security Adviser (NSA), Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd), commended INEC for the setup of the sub-committee to review the existing policy on election security to address challenges posed by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Monguno, represented by Yusuf Galadima Yusuf, expressed confidence that the reviewed policy, when adopted and put into use, would further secure the electoral space for peaceful elections in the country

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the virtual meeting was attended by heads or representatives of the armed forces and paramilitary organisations, INEC National Commissioners, Resident Electoral Commissioners and Commissioners of Police for Edo and Ondo Commands. (NAN)

Aso Rock shooting: Aisha’s security aides redeployed as Sabiu resumes work

All the security officers involved in the fracas that led to gunshots in the Presidential Villa, Abuja, have been released and redeployed to new locations.

Sources told Daily Trust last night that those redeployed but whose new posts were not known were security aides attached to the First Lady, including her Aide-De-Camp, Usman Shugaba and Escort Commander.

Meanwhile, the Special Assistant to the President, Sabiu Tunde Yusuf, has resumed work, jettisoning advice to go on self-isolation after returning from Lagos recently.

Sabiu, who is popularly known as Tunde, a name he was given after Tunde Idiagbon, the second-in-command to then Major General Muhammadu Buhari during the military regime, was sighted in the Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday.

It would be recalled that Aisha Buhari had approached Tunde to respect the COVID-19 guidelines, following his alleged refusal to go on self-isolation for 14 days.

The first lady’s encounter with Tunde, reportedly in the company of her children ,was said to have gone out of hand after the involvement of security personnel who shot into the air, breaching the security protocol in the State House, Abuja.

The development had led to the arrest of security aides attached to the president’s wife, including her Aide-De-Camp, Shugaba, and Escort Commander.

Mrs Buhari, unhappy with the move by the police authorities, had called on the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, via Twitter handle, to free her ADC and other police aides taken into custody.

Daily Trust learnt that President Buhari was not disturbed about the development since Tunde returned the day he travelled to Lagos, a situation which may not require self-isolation.

Already, President Buhari had ordered an investigation into the security breach at the State House, Abuja.

Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu, had in a statement on Sunday said the president was not under any form of danger arising, either from deadly infections or the reported incident by security personnel currently under investigation.

The spokesman of the Nigeria Police Force, Frank Mba, when contacted by one of our reporters for a comment last night, neither answered phone calls nor replied a test message sent to him. – DailyTrust reports

APC lied, we issued only one certificate to Obaseki – UI

One of the reasons cited for the disqualification of Godwin Obaseki from APC’s June 22 governorship primary in Edo State was that the University of Ibadan awarded him two certificates with separate dates.

However, the University of Ibadan debunked the claim on Sunday.

APC Screening Appeal Committee led by Abubakar Fari, on Saturday, had corroborated the report of the screening committee by stating that “It is inconceivable that the same University will award two certificates with separate dates for the same graduate.

Presenting its report to the National Working Committee headed by National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, Fari added that “We also find it difficult to vouch for the authenticity of his National Youth Service Corps certificate, there is no indication as to where he served. We find that he should be disqualified.”

Oshiomhole in his response, however, commended the chairman and members of the appeal committee for doing a “meticulous” job.

He said “It appears you were extremely meticulous to details and you justified ours – not in terms of your findings but in terms of what you were able to amplify. That you have an eye for very important details.

“We are happy you were able to finish this work timeously. This is the final appeal level, what is left now is the NWC will meet and take a decision one way or the other.”

However, UI Registrar, Olubunmi Faluyi, on Sunday restated that Obaseki graduated from the institution in 1979.

Faluyi said the institution’s stand remained as contained in an earlier statement that “Obaseki gained admission to the University in 1976 and graduated in 1979 with a Second Class Honours, Lower Division. Records of his Admission and Graduation are intact in the archives of the University.”

In the same vein, the varsity’s Director of Public Communications, Olatunji Oladejo, said the claim by the APC was false.

He said “We stand by our statement on Obaseki. How can you issue two certificates to a candidate? That is not true. It is not possible. He graduated in 1979 from the university. We issued only one certificate to him, not two.”